It’s easy to take your hips for granted as they effortlessly keep you moving throughout life. After all, you have them to thank for your ability to sit, stand, and walk. However, because of the crucial role your hip joint plays in your mobility, when problems arise, they can stop you in your tracks.
At LA Orthopaedic Specialists in downtown Los Angeles, our expert team provides the best orthopedic care available by combining gold-standard therapies with state-of-the-art treatments and surgery. Whether you have arthritis, a fracture, or an injury, we take a personalized approach so we can help you find the most effective pain relief for your individual needs and lifestyle.
Whenever possible, our team recommends minimally invasive therapies and lifestyle changes first to help rehabilitate your hip joint. However, sometimes hip replacement surgery is your best option, especially in the following instances.
Lifestyle changes aren’t enough
You’ve adopted a healthier lifestyle and lost weight, filling your diet with nourishing fruits, vegetables, fats, and proteins. You even quit smoking, stretch regularly, and perform all of your physical therapy exercises.
You may be fitter and healthier, but you still can’t walk without pain. Worse yet, you still feel sharp stabs in your hip, even when you use a walker, crutch, or cane.
Medications haven’t worked
Your doctor recommended anti-inflammatory medications or corticosteroid injections, but you still live with discomfort. Without effective pain relief, you can’t enjoy life to its fullest or perform normal daily tasks.
You have permanent tissue damage
If you have osteoarthritis, it wears away your protective joint cartilage. This tissue keeps the upper part of your thigh bone from grinding against your hip socket. When you have rheumatoid arthritis, the chronic inflammation can erode your joint cartilage or bone or deform your hips. You can also develop bone deformity or collapse from osteonecrosis, a condition in which you have poor blood flow to the ball portion of your hip joint.
Your pain impacts your daily life
Your pain keeps you from getting a good night’s sleep. You can’t manage walking up or down stairs. You find it difficult to stand up after sitting for long periods. Or your pain worsens when you walk, even when you use a cane, crutch, or walker.
How a new hip can give you a new lease on life
When you and your orthopedist decide that hip replacement is your best option for a more mobile and pain-free life, the next step is considering whether a partial or total joint replacement is right for you. We also discuss your options for a traditional surgery or minimally invasive surgery. To help find the ideal solution, your orthopedic surgeon explains each approach, describes which could provide the most relief, and makes recommendations based on your situation.
During hip replacement surgery, your surgeon starts by removing damaged bone, cartilage, and other tissues. Then, they create a new ball joint with surgical-grade metal or ceramic by fusing it directly to your upper thigh bone and make a new hip socket joint with surgical-grade plastic, which provides a friction-free surface for seamless movement.
Hip replacement is a major surgery that takes several hours, so you’re put to sleep with general anesthesia. After your procedure, you’re encouraged to sit up and start walking with crutches or a walker as soon as possible to get your blood flowing and help prevent blood clots.
Your surgeon provides you with postoperative care instructions, including physical therapy guidelines. Your hip should be healed enough to resume most normal activities within 6-12 weeks. Over the next year, you continue gaining strength and mobility, but we don’t recommend engaging in high-impact sports.
If you’re ready for a new hip so you can start living your life fully again, call LA Orthopaedic Specialists today at 213-455-8448 or book a consultation online.